The Georgia Swarm traveled to Long Island to face the New York Riptide in Week 17 action. Both teams found themselves in must-win situations to keep their playoff hopes alive. However, it was the Swarm who used an early six-goal run to emerge with a 13-8 victory. New York gets a chance for payback next weekend when they travel to Georgia for a rematch.

Swarm use big early run to control the game

The opening frame proved to be the difference in this game, with the Swarm going on an early six-goal run. Lyle Thompson (3g, 4a) scored just 57 seconds into the game. Then Zach Miller (1g, 1a; 2:55) was the beneficiary of a deflected shot that got past Riptide goaltender Cameron Dunkerley. Mike Manley (7:14) scored a transition goal, then Seth Oakes (8:51) extended the lead to four. Thompson’s second (9:43 power play) and Jordan MacIntosh (12:08) made it 6-0, silencing the crowd. Mike Burke (1g, 2a) broke the run 17 seconds later, only for Andrew Kew (5g, 4a; 13:33) to start his big night.

Thompson notched his hat trick at 2:07 of the second quarter, chasing Dunkerley in favor of Steven Orleman. Kew greeted Orleman with his second goal 44 seconds later to make it 9-1. A Georgia infraction on a Riptide breakaway resulted in a penalty shot that Jeff Teat (4g, 3a; 6:58) converted. Kew tallied his hat trick with a power play goal (10:02), but the Riptide responded with a three-goal run. Teat’s second (10:52), Scott Dominey (11:58), and Teat’s hat trick goal (13:43) cut the deficit to 10-5. Brendan Bomberry (1g, 2a; 14:15) pushed the Swarm’s lead back to six before the half.

Riptide unable to close the gap on Swarm

Dunkerley returned to the Riptide net to start the second half. Teat netted his fourth of the night at 1:48 to make it 11-6. however, Kew went back-to-back (3:52; 4:15) to push the Swarm lead to 13-6. New York could only manage two more goals in the fourth quarter, courtesy of Tyler Digby (2:03) and Connor Kearnan (1g, 2a; 11:49 power play).

The Swarm improve to 4-8 with the win. Because they have games in hand on other teams in the East Division, they still have a reasonable shot at getting a playoff spot. Meanwhile, the Riptide fall to 4-10 on the year. Unfortunately for New York, a sub-.500 team is unlikely to make the postseason, although it’s not unheard of or impossible.

Other Stats of Note

Power Play: GA 2 of 3; NY 1 of 5

Faceoffs: NY 9; GA 17

Shayne Jackson (GA): 6 assists

Brett Dobson (GA): 42 saves

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“Muffler” Mike Kostiuk

“Muffler” Mike Kostiuk was formally introduced to box lacrosse when he attended a New England Black Wolves game on a whim in 2016. Instantly hooked, he has since become an avid follower of the National Lacrosse League. Following the postponement of the 2019-2020 NLL season, he was offered the chance to share his wealth of statistical knowledge and unique insights with the lacrosse community at large. He cheerfully accepted, and covers NLL, PLL, WLA, and Major Series Lacrosse for the network.